Staying productive during holidays is difficult but it can be done. The holiday season is a busy time for most people. There are parties to attend, gifts to buy and events to plan. However, there are some things you can do to make sure you stay on top of your work during this festive time of year.
Here are some productivity tips to help you stay on track during the holidays:
Keep Your Normal Routine to Stay Productive During Holidays
1. Keep to a normal routine as much as possible. Get up at the same time, have meals at the same time whenever possible and keep the same bed time. Changing your daily routine too much can be a little disorienting and will affect your ability to be productive during holidays.
When you do certain tasks each day in your routine, you do them automatically without thinking. When you vary your schedule, it takes more effort to do those daily tasks.
2. Set realistic goals. Don’t try to do too much during the holiday season. If you have a lot on your plate, focus on what is most important and let go of the rest.
Look at the calendar and put in the events, parties, and family time. This will help you know the time you have available for working. You want your calendar to help you find time to achieve your goals, not prevent you from doing other things.
3. Make a plan. Once you have set your goals, make a plan of action. This will help you stay on track and avoid getting overwhelmed. Break down your overall goals into small steps. Use productivity tips such as setting a timer, working for 25 minutes then breaking for 5 minutes and turning off notifications so you can focus.
If one of your goals is to boost sales this season, check out this blog post 5 Tips to Get Ready fof the Holiday Sales Season.
Even one hour a day will help you make progress towards goals. If you can’t spare an hour, then do a half hour. I used to think if I couldn’t finish, then why start. But that attitude defeats you. Anything you achieve during a busy time of year is a bonus.
4. Take breaks. It’s important to take breaks when you are feeling overwhelmed or stressed. Step away from your work and take a few deep breaths. This will help clear your mind and allow you to come back to your work with fresh eyes.
If you have a full house, take a break and join in the fun. Then when life settles down, put in a bit more time.
5. Delegate tasks. If you have a lot of people in your life, delegate some of the holiday tasks to them. This will help lighten your load and allow you to focus on what is most important.
Embrace online delivery options for everything. You can order gifts, food and drinks delivered to your home which will save time shopping in a crowded store.
I used to spend a few hours a week, running errands to the store, but now those hours are saved because I have most things delivered. And I avoid all those items I use to slip in my basket that were impulse purchases, 😁.
6. Stay organized. This is key for productivity during any time of year, but it is especially important during the holidays. Keep your work area clean and organized so you can easily find what you need.
You waste time when you have to look for what you need. The same is true of digital organization. Color code your file folders, separate files on desktop into those you use daily and put others in a a different area.
For tips on clearing digital clutter, check out this previous blog post: 11 Tips for Organizing Digital Clutter.
7. Set boundaries. It’s okay to say no during the holidays. If you are too busy to attend a party or go Christmas shopping, don’t feel guilty about it. You need to prioritize your time and focus on what is most important to you. Being productive during holidays is about choosing how to progress in your work without sacrificing personal time.
However, do the things you want to do. After all, it is the holidays and nothing is more important than spending time with friends and family.
8. Self Care. This is the most important productivity tip of all. Make sure you are taking care of yourself physically, mentally and emotionally. If you are stressed, tired or sick, it will be very difficult to get anything done. So make sure to take some time for yourself and relax.
Make sure you are getting enough sleep and eat regular meals. It is ok to indulge and enjoy those holiday treats but try not over indulge. If you over do it one day, get back to normal the next day so it balances out.
9. Reflect and adjust. Things can seem a bit chaotic at holidays. Lots of people coming and going, parties, events and food everywhere. If the plan you originally made is not working, then make adjustments in the moment.
Perhaps you need to adjust the time when you are working, slip off to a different place, adjust the days or just adjust your expectations. There is nothing wrong with having a “vacation” at holiday time and putting work on hold for a few days. Especially if you have a young family. Be present.
By following these productivity tips, you can stay on track during the holiday season and enjoy a festive and stress-free time. Happy Holidays!